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a line from Theognis of Megara

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a line from Theognis of Megara

Postby NateD26 » Thu Sep 10, 2009 12:09 am

Hello, new user here! have introduced myself here

The line in question is 167:

ἄλλ' (=ἄλλο) ἄλλῳ κακόν ἐστι, τὸ δ' ἀτρεκὲς ὄλβιος οὐδεὶς ἀνθρώπων
ὀπόσους Ἠέλιος καθορᾷ


does the first part mean: evil is different for another person
where ἄλλο is simply a predicate nom. of κακόν?

or should it be: to another it is a bad thing/evil matter
where it will stands as a simple adj. ?

I have this line in my Hebrew study book as a translation exercise so I cannot judge this in context.

With the second part I had hard time understanding how to translate ὀπόσους.
Jason Hare from this forum has kindly helped me translating as:

yet the truth (is that) none is blessed of men, as many as Helios looks down upon.

I couldn't understand how as many as here play the role of accusative?
and what is its antecedent here, be it elided or not?

I hope my question is written properly.
Regards,
Nate,
Nate.
NateD26
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Re: a line from Theognis of Megara

Postby vir litterarum » Thu Sep 10, 2009 2:34 am

"One thing is wicked to one man, another is wicked to another, but really no one of humans is happy, as many as Helios looks down upon."

Whenever you have two forms of "allos" in the same sentence, you translate them this way; see Smyth 1274 for a slightly more detailed explanation. τὸ ἀτρεκὲς is an adverbial accusative, lit. "with respect to that which is exact," i.e. "really, truly." the antecedent of ὀπόσους is ἀνθρώπων , which is a partitive genitive dependent on οὐδεὶς. It is in the accusative case because it functions in the relative clause as the direct object of καθορᾷ.

Out of curiosity, why would you be translating Theognis of Megara in a Hebrew study book?
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Re: a line from Theognis of Megara

Postby NateD26 » Thu Sep 10, 2009 9:16 am

Thank you. I just looked in Smyth 1274 and it is quite clear.

I'd only learned Attic Greek for one year (my first and only year).
Since in Israel the main language of teaching is Hebrew, the common study books in English
weren't used but one in Hebrew written by the former head of the Classics' department. As part
of every lesson (in the style of Mastronarde's book), Greek passages were given for translation:
some were made-up, some adapted for our level, and others were authentic lines from literary works
of the classical period.

This book was--at least to my taste--a tad cryptic and overly-condensed at times, but fortunately we had our teacher to elaborate and demonstrate the matters at hand. Smyth was rarely consulted unless
the teacher had felt it necessary. A more balanced approach would have been tremendously helpful,
for when we began reading Plato's Apology, I was quickly disillusioned by how insufficient my practice
had been and how many grammatical phenomena we've yet to learn.

I continue on my own and hope to get better at it some day.
Nate.
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Re: a line from Theognis of Megara

Postby vir litterarum » Thu Sep 10, 2009 3:23 pm

well, introductory Greek classes are always inadequate, regardless of the curriculum. A great method, though, of quickly increasing your knowledge of Greek grammar is to read through a work with a commentary that makes copious references to Smyth. Helm's edition of the Apology is a good example, and, I'm not positive, but I believe that Selections from Herodotus has an excellent commentary as well.
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